Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Swedish Parental Security

I've heard of the wonderful governmental laws/benefits in Sweden in regards to maternity/paternity leave and so I thought I would research it myself.  After reviewing...all I can ask is, "when can I move?"

Below summarizes the benefits:

Social security and insurance                                         

Family and maternity benefits
Maternity benefit
If your work is physically taxing and you are unable to carry out your duties because you are pregnant, you can ask to be transferred to a different position. If this is not possible or if there are risks in the working environment, you may be entitled to a maternity allowance from 60 days prior to your anticipated confinement date.

Parental allowance and parental leave
Parental allowance can be claimed from 60 days before the anticipated confinement date. Parental leave can be taken as a whole day, half day, quarter day or an eighth of a day.

You are entitled to parental leave from seven weeks before your anticipated confinement date. You are also entitled to leave up until your child reaches the age of 18 months.

Until a child is eight years of age, parents have the right to reduce their working hours by 25%.

The right to parental leave is governed by the Swedish Act on Parental Leave (Föräldraledighetslagen). The law also stipulates that:

  • Both mothers and fathers have the right to leave
  • Adoptive parents are also covered by the law
  • To qualify for parental leave, you need to have been employed for at least six months, or to have worked for at least 12 months during the past two years
  • Leave can be taken as a single consecutive period or divided into separate periods
  • Leave can be taken with or without parental allowance
A new father may take ten days’ leave with pay following the birth of a child, even if the mother is claiming parental allowance.

Parental allowance gives parents the opportunity to stay away from work to look after their child for a maximum of 480 days. The allowance is based on eligible sick pay earnings (SGI). For 390 of these days, the allowance is 80% (up to a certain maximum level) of SGI. 90 days is paid at a certain basic level. For those with no SGI, a parental allowance can also be obtained at this basic level. Parents are each entitled to half the parental allowance, but one parent is allowed to transfer their half of the allowance to the other, with the exception of 60 days.

Temporary parental allowance in the event of a child’s sickness
Temporary parental allowance can be given to parents who stay at home to look after sick children under the age of 12. After 18 days, a doctor’s certificate is required.

Child allowance and additional allowance for extra children
If you have a child under the age of 16 you will receive a child allowance if the child is resident in Sweden. Once the child reaches the age of 16 the child allowance will stop and be replaced by extended child allowance if your child is still attending school. Extended child allowance is paid until the month the child finishes secondary school.
If you have three or more children, you may be entitled to an additional allowance for extra children. Families may also be entitled to additional child allowance when children over 16 continue with their studies without any interruption.

Maintenance support
If you live with your child as a single parent, the child may be entitled to a maintenance allowance. The other parent will be expected to pay towards the child’s upkeep by paying a maintenance allowance. As parents you may agree the maintenance allowance for your child. If you are unable to reach agreement, the contribution will be fixed by a court.

Sounds like a great country to live in if you want to stay at home with you babies the first few years.

Mommy Bridget

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